Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

Full-time to Part-time Employment: How to Make the Switch

Many offices have that happy person who comes in a couple hours after everyone else, and leaves a couple hours before everyone else. How do you get your schedule to be like theirs? Here are some tips for negotiating the switch from full-time employment to part-time employment. Spoilers: it will involve a pay cut. However, part-time employment can be a great way to have a work-life balance— and to be the envy of your office!

The biggest moment in transitioning from full-time employment to part-time employment will be the conversation(s) you have with your boss. Before you have those talks, here are a few things to consider:

  • What do you need from your part-time employment hours? Are you looking for more family time, hours to pursue a side business or freelancing? Or are you in a financial position to simply work less overall? The answers to these questions will help you come up with some desired part-time hours that will suit your needs. For example, family or other business obligations might affect the part-time employment hours you will want to work. Your home situation might also impact the possibility of telecommuting, even if your employer is open to it.
  • What compensation do you need from your part-time employment? Benefits like health plans and PTO often only come with full-time employment, so be sure to think about whether you can get by without those things. If those are non-negotiable for you, think about what other concessions you could make to get those benefits. Think about what sort of pay you will need from your new part-time position, and consider salary as part of your total compensation package.
  • How do you envision your new responsibilities as a part-time employee— and the impact it might have on your team? This is important, because it can sometimes be difficult for an employer to rethink full-time employment for an employee. Will you simply take on fewer projects? Will someone else have to cover your shift? Will your employer have to hire someone else? Think of good answers to these questions, and include them in the pitch to your employer.

Use these questions to develop a cohesive, comprehensive pitch to your employer about part-time employment. Also be sure to talk to any part-time employees in your office about their experiences negotiating their hours and working part-time. This is a good way to prepare yourself for how difficult the conversation might be. It might not be difficult at all! Your coworkers can give you all kinds of valuable advice— and even in some cases give you reasons to reconsider your move from full-time employment to part-time employment.

Good luck making the transition! Has anyone ever negotiated part-time employment with an employer? Leave a comment below, or send me a tweet: @ithinkther4iamb

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by ell brown

Kristin Anderson

Kristin has a B.A. in English from the University of Iowa, with an emphasis in creative writing. In her free time she enjoys long walks, kitchen adventures, and making puns.